Trungle Parc, Paul, Mousehole, Penzance
We’ve heard of campsites with a footballpitch on offer, but how about the other way round? Tucked in the far southwestern corner of the British Isles, Mousehole Camping in Cornwall offersexactly that – a minor league football club that have introduced a handy littlecampsite adjacent to their playing field.
Trungle Parc is home to the South West Peninsula League's finest, Mousehole AFC. Their idea, is nothing short of genius. The essential facilities have long been in place – showers, toilets andsinks inside the main changing rooms and a clubhouse bar, with cheap drinks anda fantastic community atmosphere – while the field is purposefully flat andwell drained, the ideal conditions for camping. If you don’t mind that slightlymakeshift, pop-up campsite feel than you can’t go far wrong here. Tents are welcome in July and August (when the footy season is over) but if you've come by campervan and secured one of the five prized, pitches, there’s afree game to watch every Saturday!
Of course, the real success of thiscampsite doesn’t stem from the fact that the facilities are well maintained andprices kept conveniently low (though it certainly helps), but more importantlyfrom its knock-your-socks-off location. At the end of the day, this is the realreason a football club can get away with opening up a corner of its ground andotherwise just leaving you to it!
A stroll away from the campsite entrance,the tiny village of Paul has all the endearing characteristics you’d expect ofvillage with the same name as your mate from down the road. Paul’s local, theKings Arms, is a cosy, old stone haunt, with a couple of picnic benches outside, looking across to the parish church opposite. The centre of thevillage’s history, this towered old building is said to have been founded inthe year 409 by the Welsh saint, Paul Aurelian... though a further two SaintPaul’s are also disputably it’s rightful honouree. Today’s structure actuallydates to the year 1600, after the invitingly isolated Penwith Peninsula wassacked and burned by marauding Spaniards five years earlier.
The campsite or, more accurately, thefootball club, takes its name from the next village over, a tiny cluster ofhouses encircling a beautiful old harbour. It was here that the Spanish firstlanded, with a plaque outside the only surviving building that reads "SquireJenkyn Keigwin was killed here 23 July 1595 defending this house against theSpaniards". Today the picture-perfect spot, speckled with colourfuldinghies, boasts a sandy crescent beach when the tide is out and excellentcrabbing opportunities from the far harbour walls. It’s your first discovery ofmany along this stretch of heritage coastline; a peninsula on the very edge ofthe country with all the drama, history and intrigue that you could ask for.
The Owner SaysMousehole Camping is a family and pet friendly site based at a local football club in Paul, Penzance, only a mile's walk (downhill) from the famous Mousehole Harbour. Facilities on site include newly tiled solar-powered showers, wash basins supplied with hot water, a clubhouse (open during busy times) selling soft and alcoholic drinks, a pool table, table football, television and ample car parking. There is a large stainless steel sink for washing up your pots and pans. The campsite is just 500 metres from a local pub serving great food and beers and wifi is available on site
Basic but adventurous camping in a good location
Our stay at Mousehole AFC was not with incident - despite it being the middle of summer the front of our tent was blown in, and the field just about held off becoming a paddy field at some points. We stayed for two weeks, and were very well looked after by the site manager Les. One problem was the lack of defined pitches in the busy period; it meant we had to move at one point just to have a decent amount of privacy. Loved the showers - very nice after a day's activity, and the location is great - easily reach stunning clifftop walks, beaches and coves.
Chilled out Cornwall
We were welcomed to the site by Les who turned up within a few minutes of contacting him and showed us where to pitch our tent, he gave us a quick run down of the local area and gave us some money off vouchers for local attractions. The shower facilities are within the football changing rooms and could cope fine with the amount of people staying on the site. The field was full with other campers and there was room to park the car next to our tent. There is a bar which is open in the evening with a pool table and table football, we made use of this as it was very damp during our stay. There was also a game on for one of the evenings which meant there was a great atmosphere in the bar as they have a good following. The campsite is in a great location with a nice walk down to Mousehole although we couldn't face the walk back up the hill so got the bus. It is just a short drive to Penzance, just a few minutes where there are a number of supermarkets. If you are looking for a decent, back to basics campsite on a small scale this place is perfect chilled out Cornwall- 'andsome!